GOJEK snags investment from Mitsubishi for ongoing Series F round

Ilustrasi Gojek/ GO-JEK. REUTERS/Beawiharta

Indonesia-based ride-hailing unicorn GOJEK on Monday announced an unspecified investment from Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, Mitsubishi Corporation, and Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance as part of its ongoing Series F funding round.

Mitsubishi Corporation is an existing GOJEK investor, having participated in the first close of its Series F round announced in February.

According to a statement, the fresh investment will allow Mitsubishi to tap into GOJEK’s expertise and presence in the mobility and consumer services market in the region.

“Bringing Mitsubishi Motors and Mitsubishi Corporation’s long and strong presence and brand power in Southeast Asia, as well as GOJEK’s diversified and unique business potential together, we foresee the creation of large synergies and innovation that will boost the growth of the three parties,” said Mitsubishi Motors Corporation chairman Osamu Masuko.

Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance president and CEO Takahiro Yanai said the financial services provider will reinforce its partnership with GOJEK and explore new business models focused on digital and mobility services.

“These partnerships and commitments enable us to continue growing our products and services to reach more people and create greater value in the region,” said GOJEK group president Andre Soelistyo.

The startup last announced raising $100 million in March from Indonesian conglomerate Astra International, a follow-on funding from the conglomerate that pumped in $150 million in its Series E round last year.

The funding from Astra brought GOJEK’s Series F round to its first close. Although the company did not reveal details, it is learnt to have then raised over $1 billion at a nearly $10-billion valuation from investors including Provident Capital, Google, JD.com and Tencent.

The ride-hailing startup is said to be seeking an additional $2 billion in equity and debt financing to close the Series F round. We reported earlier that it has hired Citi to work on the fundraising.

GOJEK has earlier said that it plans to invest the Series F funds across transport, food delivery, logistics, mobile payments, and merchant services businesses. It also plans to use proceeds to accelerate its market expansion across Southeast Asia, a market which has been dominated by the heavily-funded Grab.

The Indonesian startup has been expanding aggressively into three new regional markets – Vietnam, Singapore and Thailand. It is yet to enter the Philippines as its plans to foray into the market hit a roadblock early this year due to foreign ownership regulations. It has also expressed interest in extending its services to Malaysia, Myanmar and Cambodia this year.

GOJEK is gearing up to race against its larger rival Grab. Their rivalries range from ride-hailing to mobile payments and food delivery services in the markets that both startups are present in.

Last week, Grab announced a new investment from consumer credit giant Experian as part of its ongoing Series H funding round, a week after securing $300 million in financing from US-based investment manager Invesco.

Grab has previously said that it aims to raise $6.5 billion for its Series H, which is expected to close by the end of this year. It has already secured more than $4.5 billion for the round, including a whopping $1.46-billion funding by Masayoshi Son’s SoftBank Vision Fund.

Southeast Asia has seen a surge in fundraising over the last four years as internet companies in the region began to seriously attract the attention of venture capital, private equity and corporate investors in 2015 when funds raised crossed the $1 billion mark for the first time, according to a Google-Temasek report.

In the first half of last year, Southeast Asia’s internet companies raised $9.1 billion – an all-time record. The region’s ride-hailing market is expected to reach $28 billion by 2025 from an estimated $7.7 billion last year, said the report.